Tourism Boom in Japan Prompts Digital Platforms for Storage Service Providers

Year in and year out, Japan welcomes millions of travelers all over the globe. It is regarded as one of the fastest growing tourist destinations worldwide. With the surge in tourism, a lot of foreign visitors in Japan find it hard to look for available lockers where they can leave their baggages and other personal belongings as they tour around popular spots such as Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto.


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However, carrying a heavy luggage while sightseeing can be pretty inconvenient especially for independent travelers who did not avail of any guided or organized tour packages. Since more and more tourists nowadays prefer to go on independent trips rather than availing of the services of these travel agencies, designated lockers in Japan can no longer accomodate the demands of foreign visitors who wish to secure their baggages. Finding an empty locker can thus be very challenging both for local and foreign tourists.


To address this matter, Japanese establishments are planning to provide more storage spaces in order to cater to the needs of travelers who bring along with them baggages of different sizes. This also prompted digital platform companies to launch an application that seeks to assist tourists by connecting them with providers of storage spaces. Tokyo-based Ecbo Inc. operates the first ever online platform in Japan that matches tourists with prospective firms that offer baggage storage services.


The Ecbo Cloak service was organized since January of 2017 to link tourists with establishments that allow them to store their luggage at more than a thousand facilities in Japan which includes coffee shops, cosmetic salons, videoke parlors and even shrines in big cities from Kyushu to Hokkaido. Travelers can easily access the application online to book storage spaces for a fixed amount just by using their smartphones or by checking out the company’s official website. Acccording to Tokyo-based Ecbo Inc., there are about 220,000 lockers available all over Japan but the installation of 300,000 more storage spaces is necessary to meet the expected influx of tourists in their country.


Reference: Hands-free travel approaches reality in Japan as firms tap demand for luggage-storage options


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